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Don’t Phone It In: The Subtle Art of Prospecting by Telephone

These days, so much of our everyday exchanges happen online. Sure, it’s convenient, but not always the most appropriate venue for an insurance sale to take place. I happen to work with Medicare Supplements, and I find that phone calls are vastly underrated in terms of a way to close those sales.

Initiating applications by phone actually makes great sense when you think about it. You never get a flat tire, get stuck in a ditch, or run into an ice storm. And you save money on gas (a major concern these days, especially if your prospect is several miles away).

Another perk to doing business over the phone is that prospects feel less threatened. Remember, some seniors citizens aren’t comfortable opening their home to someone they don’t know personally. Plus, a phone conversation beats email and other online communications in terms of being able to add a personal touch—a human element to the necessary business dealings. It’s the next best thing to a face-to-face conversation.

That said, here are three easy tips to help elevate phone prospecting from a daily chore to a practiced art:

1) When the prospect answers the phone, identify yourself and the company you represent. If you focus on individuals who are about to turn 65, wish them a happy birthday, and ask if they have considered which Med Supp they’d like to purchase in order supplement their coverage. Whether they say ‘”Yes” or “No,” you have an opening to continue the conversation.

2) Keep a mirror on your desk and smile while you talk. This positive energy will translate over the phone. You can also add excitement and variation to your calls by standing up and moving around. Again, this kinetic energy gets reflected in the tone of your voice, and the prospect is likely to respond positively.

3) If your prospect doesn’t answer, and you leave a voice mail, keep it brief and make sure to speak clearly and slowly enough to be easily understood. Leave your name, company name, phone number twice, and a simple statement that targets a particular plan or product that might suit them. For example, “I look forward to speaking with you and telling you about Plan HDF, one of our most popular Medicare Supplement Plans” or “I look forward to speaking with you and learning more about your coverage needs.”

Implementing this advice should be simple enough, and the payoff could be exponential. Of course, you must adhere to National Do-Not-Call Registry requirements and any applicable state laws regarding telemarketing.

About Chuck Mankamyer

Chuck Mankamyer
After his discharge from the Navy in 1970, Chuck Mankamyer started his insurance career with a small health and life agency in Florida. Within a few months, he was promoted to Agency Manager and was completely responsible for agency growth through recruiting and training. Less than a decade later, Chuck had grown the agency from one office to five offices with 125 career agents and 1,800 outside brokers. Chuck opened a new agency in 1979 and contracted to represent United American. Starting with a three-person office, Chuck grew to ten offices located throughout Florida and Georgia. He later opened his wholesale brokerage company, American Life and Health Group, Inc. Throughout his career, Chuck has recruited more than 40,000 agents nationwide. In 2009, after 30 years as a General Agent for United American, Chuck brought his extensive recruiting expertise to the United American Home Office in McKinney, Texas. No one knows how to recruit like Chuck Mankamyer.

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